Michelle Clancy ©RapidTVNews | 18-08-2011

Despite insistence on the part of cable companies that video cord-cutting is not a real threat, new research suggests that churn to Internet streaming video is actually a significant issue for pay-TV providers.

Approximately 5% of U.S. households have cut the cord using alternatives to pay TV viewing, according to a survey by Centris. Approximately .8% of cord-cutting was done for content issues...but the majority of it was driven by economic factors.

Approximately 5% of Internet-enabled households are using broadcast TV and OTT strategies (streaming to the living room) to support their video consumption requirements. But a major market battle ground is what Centris calls co-consumption. Approximately 56% of households are using a combination of traditional pay TV and PC or mobile-basd Internet consumption approaches to view video.

Centris sees this as a significant market shift at work, driven by the obvious twin realities of increased broadband availability and speed, as well as new enabling technologies (e.g. iPads, tablets, smartphones, etc.).

So what's an operator to do? "Technology changes always provide competitors with new distribution and product innovation options, as well as cost reduction opportunities," said William Beaumont, president at Centris. "The initiatives being pursued by the major market players are intended to integrate content provider and distributor value chains with those of their customers. This is intended to provide a better customer experience and create competitive advantage."

The information for the report was gleaned from Centris' second quarterly survey on the evolving video market, part of an ongoing tracking study. Since November 2010, Centris has accumulated over 53,000 Internet household surveys on this issue.